BONIFACE KARANJA: FREELANCING IN THE WORLD OF TECHNOLOGY

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Well grounded in information communication technology, young techie leaves formal employment and plunges into entrepreneurship

By Brenda Wambui

Boniface Karanja is nothing like his intimidating curriculum vitae (CV). Laughing and joking throughout the interview, he is as down to earth as the guy next door. But then I glance at his CV and it is all there – very impressive stuff. He undertook his primary school education at Mugumoini Junior Academy and attained 420 marks in the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) examination in 2006. Then he was enrolled in one of the best high schools in the country – Mang’u High School – and scored an A plain in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examination in 2010. In 2011, he joined The Institute of Advanced Technology for an International Computer Driving Licence (ICDL) course. Later, he joined the University of Nairobi to pursue a bachelor of science degree course in microprocessor technology and instrumentation. He graduated with a second class upper division degree in 2017.

After graduating, green in the job market but eager to succeed, he joined Davis and Shirtliff as a software developer, system maintenance adviser and implementer in 2018. After one and a half years, he quit formal employment in order to undertake freelance jobs in technology like from scratch pc builds, configuration, modification and maintenance, coding and website development, research and tech industry trends as well as consultancy.

Success

So how has he managed to achieve so much while still young? “ At a tender age, I watched a gentleman on television happily graduating with a doctorate degree ,” he

says adding that the occasion motivated him to yearn for such an achievement when he grew up. Consequently, when he started schooling, he focused on his studies and his effort earned him top grades in the national examinations.

While in high school, he developed passion in the field of technology. Consequently, he studied computer studies, besides participating in many information communication technology (ICT) symposiums at his school and others in different parts of the country. “Once I was done with high school, I knew the career path I would choose would be tech related.” Karanja avers.

As a computer programmer, he stays abreast on the evolution of several computer languages. Indeed, the fast rate of growth in technology demands constant learning. He mainly focuses on JavaScript, PHP, Android, Python, HTML, MySQL, C# and C++.

As a software developer, he mainly focuses on the android technology that is used in mobile phones since it can be customizable to the customers’ taste. This gives the app developer more control over the outcome of the final product. “I also develop websites, blogs and portals with accompanying databases,” he adds.

Working at Davis and Shirtliff gave him a lot of experience and it prepared him for his journey as a freelancer in technology. He endeavours to learn as much as possible in order to serve his clients effectively, given that their personalities and tastes are different.

Achievements

Every day, given the dynamic nature of his business, he gets new experiences. “ Having a blank sheet to work on without any restrictions opens up a project to very many possibilities,” he avers. Back in campus, Karanja and a group of his classmates developed a security system prototype after a lot of experimentation. It was an eye opener for him.

Technology helps in making people’s lives better. It is in that respect that Karanja is aspiring to spearhead the development of innovative technological products by leveraging on the resources at his disposal; for instance the internet.

Market trends

Since 2017, the computer hardware that is being developed in the market (especially laptops, desktops, workstations and gaming personal computers) are focused on having high resolution panels with either high refresh rates or adaptive sync technology with variable refresh rates for a smooth gaming and content creation experience.

In addition, versatile central processing units (CPUs) that consume less power compared to the ones of the previous generations have been introduced in the market. Moreover, new technology such as real time ray tracing has been adopted by many consumers.

In his free time, the young techie enjoys watching movies, writing poetry and eating out. When he is stressed he likes to unwind by repairing and upgrading computing products.

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